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Acacia phlebophylla

Acacia phlebophylla is also known by the names Buffalo Sallow Wattle and MT. Buffalo Wattle.

A. phlebophylla is a straggling shrub to small, twisted tree to 5 m. It has large, elliptic, flat, commonly asymmetrical phyllodes 4-14 cm long, 1.5-6 cm wide with coarse veins and a leathery feel, prominent nerves and reticulated veins. Deep yellow rod-like flowers appear in spring (June-Dec.), widely scattered on spikes 4-7 cm long, followed by 7-10 cm long legumes in Nov.-Mar., narrow, straight or slightly curved, releasing 5-10 elliptical seeds, 5-7.5 mm long. Solitary or twinned spikes, to 6 cm long. Only known from the high altitude granite slopes of Mt. Buffalo National Park Victoria (Australia), where it occurs above 350 m in woodlands and heathlands often amongst granite boulders.

"Leaves have been used by thrillseekers and neoshamans as DMT source in ayahuasca brews and for extraction. Considering the delicate state of this plant such actions should be condemned. It is important to note that the dried leaves that have fallen off the tree in dry summers retain their potency for many months. At the end of summer it is not unusual to see more leaves on the ground than on the tree itself. Collecting such fallen leaves appears to be sustainable. In an analysis performed in 1967, the leaves yielded 0.3% of N,N-Dimethyltryptamine (DMT). Thin-layer chromatography indicated that this was the only base present. It appears that this is one of the purest natural sources of DMT. Assays have shown that an effective ayahusca brew can be made from the dead leaves. Christian Raetsch also reported reasonable and cumulative effects from smoking the dead leaves. It appears that this is the only plant species that has sufficiently high concentrations of tryptamines to make it possible to get reasonable effects by smoking the unprocessed material!"

A. phlebophylla has some general similarity to A. alpina, but it is not closely related and readily distinguished from it. Phyllodes tend to have red granular margins similar to A. obtusifolia; very young growth also has a quite similar appearance as that of A. obtusifolia. It is a fairly distinctive species. Propagation is by seed or tissue culture or seed. Seeds need scarification to germinate. Once the seeds have germinated and the first true leaves start to emerge, Acacia phlebophylla seedlings are liable to damp-off with high humidity. The mountains that they come from are rarely humid and are highly exposed on mostly pure rock. The seeds germinate in the cracks. It is also a place of extreme temperature differential, with the night temperature going down to -7 or -10C. Alternately the daytime temp. can be extremely hot with the rock absorbing heat as the day goes on reaching up to 40C or 50C on the faces.

This species does not like growing anywhere other than its natural habitat. It has been transplanted to other alpine regions, similar climates and entirely different habitats - all without success. Growth is vigorous in the first 2 years, then slows in the third year, after which the plant usually dies within a few months. Grafting onto the closely related Acacia maidenii is also unsuccessful. The plants on Mt Buffalo are largely affected by galling. This appears to be the result of a parasitic insect, apparently itself an endangered species. As a secondary infection there also appears to be a fungus promoting the galls. As Mt Buffalo has suffered under drought for the years 1998 to 2002, most plants have suffered greatly. Moving from one plant to another, especially if touching or 'taking samples' may promote the distribution of the disease and may cause more damage. Some areas are quite obviously more affected than others.

We have been able to aquire a very limited number (50) of seeds of this species to sell for $6.75 US each. (Currently sold out.) It should be noted that this plant is an extremely sensitive endangered species which is quite difficult to grow in cultivation past a few years of age outside its' natural habitat. The plants appear to have a symbiotic relationship with rhizobium bacteria that fix nitrogen in nodules that form on the roots. If you would like to purchase seeds of this species from Tryptamind please send an email, indicating the number you would like, to: steve@digemail.com

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